Broken Pieces

Jack Canon's American Destiny

A Study in Sin by August Wainwright

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

We had only driven a few blocks when Sam piped up.

“You can't be pissed at me if you don't like her,” he said.

“If I don't like her or she's some sort of psycho control freak, then there's nothing forcing me to live with her. I'll just tell her that I'll think about it and we can go our separate ways. Don't worry about it.”

“I'm just saying, you're the one who wanted to meet her. So you can't hold it against me if things don't go well.”

“What the hell is wrong with you?”

“You don't understand. Remy is – I don't even know. She's brilliant, I can promise you that, and sometimes it's amazing to be around her. But it's like she wasn't raised by humans. She just says whatever she's thinking, and a lot of the time, her thoughts don't even make sense. It can be off-putting to people. I don't know. I just can't give you much because I don't know anything about her other than what's said at the lab, which isn't much.”

“Give me an example of something she's done,” I said, challenging him.

“Last week, she had been consuming medical journals one after the other. There were four of us in the lab that day and she interrupts everyone and announces 'Half of all Americans will die of heart disease.' then she looked around the room and stared at this guy named Tiny and I; like she wanted us to know she was talking about us. Then she just goes back to what she was reading.”

I almost burst out laughing.

“It's fine, Sam. I can handle myself.”

“Alright, but don't say I didn't warn you. We're here by the way,” he said as we turned down an alley behind a row of buildings. We parked at the end of the row and I followed him down the steel staircase on the side of the building that led to the lower level. When we entered through the outer door, I was immediately hit by the stale smell of old air. Sam turned and opened the first door on his right.

“The Lab” as he called it was more like a basement hideout for an unclean, villainous comic mastermind. There were computers and parts and equipment everywhere. Wires hung from the ceiling and plastic soda and water bottles were littered over the desktops that ran along the outer walls of the room. In the middle of the mess was a high-topped laboratory table that stretched the full length of the room. I assumed that's what gave the place its name.

As I looked around the room, I noticed that I had drawn the attention of a man that had been staring at his computer screen, which was full of lined code. His stare made me uncomfortable, mostly because he was the largest human being I'd ever seen.

“That's Tiny,” Sam whispered. I remembered his story and laughed to myself before nodding in Tiny's direction. He looked at me for a few more seconds and then turned back to his monitor without saying a word.

Then my eyes caught sight of a little woman working on a laptop at the far end of the lab table. She was surrounded by papers full of charts and scribbles. The glow of the screen lit her features and I wondered to myself why Sam hadn't mentioned that his friend was so good looking. She stared at her laptop with large, bright eyes. I couldn't look away.

Sam walked towards her.

“What are you working on Remy?”

“Why would the heiress of a vast energy empire, chosen amongst nine children to take over the family business, disappear on the very day she was to be named the benefactor?” she asked without ever looking up from her computer.

“I don't know. What do you think?” Sam said back.

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Genre – Mystery / Thriller / Suspense

Rating – PG13

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